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To All Our Valentines

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The fight started out as a simple argument.

It was something so simple, what did Jace want to do for Valentine’s Day. It had been kind of a tradition at this point that they’d do something together, ever since they exchanged Valentine’s Day cards in their first grade class. Some years they made it an event, they’d go out to a fancy restaurant, they’d dance in the middle of the street, Jace’s phone playing their old prom slow dance song. Some years they would simply hang out at one of the other’s house, binge on Doritos and marathon Simon’s recent obsession. Some years, they didn’t begin together, but by the end they would realize just who still had their heart.

This year Simon didn’t really know what to expect. Last year they had spent Valentine’s Day celebrating their one year anniversary of living together. They had made it simple. Simon woke up to the smell of scrambled eggs and bacon filtering into their bedroom. He didn’t have to wait long before Jace appeared with a tray of his magically delicious breakfast, taking a seat next to his boyfriend of who knows how long. They ate and talked, comfortable in bed and in each other’s presence. Later, they had done dishes together, resulting in some wet shirts and soap in Jace’s hair.

They spent the rest of the day in pajamas, slow dancing to old love songs and ordering pizza with heart shaped pepperonis. The sex later that night had been gentle, but of course, it couldn’t be their Valentine’s Day sex without someone falling or cracking a joke, causing them both to laugh uncontrollably.

Unfortunately, this year was not off to a good start.

“Why are you always like this?” Simon screeched standing in the living room, gawking at something Jace had finished saying.

“What? Can’t handle a little criticism, Lewis?” Jace shot back barely sparing his boyfriend a glance.

“Oh so it’s Lewis now? God, you are such a dick!” He yelled.

“Have you ever considered that maybe I’m being a dick because you make it incredibly hard not to be a dick?” He retaliated, making his way into the kitchen, anything to keep his hands busy.

“Great! Now it’s my fault that you woke up with a shitty attitude?”

“Well, maybe had you let me sleep instead of talking my ear off, like you always do, about some stupid Star Wars shit, cause that’s all you pay attention too, then yes maybe I wouldn’t be in such a  bad mood. Therefore, yes it’s your fault.” Jace had finished before turning to glare at his boyfriend.

Simon swallowed the lump that had formed in his throat.

“Fine, if I’m so horrible and since my constant talking annoys you so fucking much, why don’t you just leave? I mean, if it’s my fault you’re a dick, then naturally if I’m out of the picture, then you should be happy?” Jace rolled his eyes, huffing before turning back to the sink to place his empty mug inside.

“That’s not what I meant?” Simon whipped his head around, eyes wide with incredulity.

“Okay, then what did you mean?” He demanded from his place in the kitchen doorway.

Jace rolled his eyes, before scoffing at whatever he was thinking about. The situation? The argument?

“Whatever.” He said instead, before turning to walk past boyfriend. Simon had a different idea and grabbed his boyfriend by the upper arm.

“Hold up, you can’t just leave without explaining yourself. What did you mean?” Jace ripped his arm from his grasp, glaring at Simon.

“Drop it Lewis, Christ, why the hell do I put up with someone as annoying as you?” He spat out, moving away from Simon to gather up his boots and his jacket. Silence fell over them, Jace somewhat occupied, whereas Simon just felt cold. All over. He blinked back the tears that were forming in his eyes, before speaking once more.

“Why do you?” Jace stopped in his tracks. “What?” He turned to his boyfriend who stood uncharacteristically still near the kitchen doorway.

“Why do you put up with me? If I’m so horrible and I’m such a fucking drain on you, why stick around? You never liked annoying people, so why torture yourself by being with me? It’s not like you don’t have a plethora of other people to pick from, so really why stick around?” Simon’s voice wavered, slightly cracking here and there. Jace’s face had morphed from confusion, to realization, to guilt.

“Simon...” He started, rising up from the couch.

“Just go, Jace.” He whispered, voice cracking as he said his name. His boyfriend moved to say anything, but Simon shook his head.

“Just go!” With that Jace shut his mouth after muttering fine. Grabbing his wallet he barged out of their apartment.

At the sound of the door being slammed shut, Simon walked over to their old couch and wrapped himself in the blanket Jace had been using earlier. He inhaled the scent his boyfriend had left on it and broke down sobbing.


 

After what had felt like forever, Simon got up and moved to their bedroom, still wrapped in the blanket. It wasn’t unusual for them to get into fights, most of them being about petty things like dish duty or who didn’t replace the toilet paper. Still, never had Jace said anything about Simon being a nuisance, especially his rambling. Ever. He knew how self-conscious he was about it. In fact, before they had become official in high school, he had told Jace that he hoped that whoever he married could accept the annoying way he rambled and ranted and just how he was so overwhelming.

And Jace.

Jace just stared at him in disbelief, voicing his wonder at how anyone would be stupid enough not to date him just because he liked to talk and was so animated.

“Besides, I think it’s what makes you, well, you. You look happy and excited, I don’t understand why someone wouldn’t want you to be those things.”

Simon wiped away a few tears that had slipped out as he remembered how accepted he felt around Jace, back when they decided to be friends, so scared of what had always been between them. He just wished he could go back to those days, when he knew at some level that Jace’s love was there. Now, he wasn’t sure. If he was honest, he hadn’t been for a while. Jace had been distant lately and Simon had begun to wonder if Jace had started falling out of love with him. Started to hate the little comments he made while watching movies. Started to hate the way he would pick at his shirt when he was nervous, or how he fidgeted when he felt a buildup of energy. Maybe, he’d finally realized that he could do so much better than Simon, someone who he could walk around proud off. Someone who didn’t keep him up with his stupid voice.

He glanced around the room before his eyes landed on a box tucked away in the top left corner of their small closet. He walked slowly towards it, arms reaching out to grab the box. He brought it back with him to their unmade bed. He sat crossed legged as he brushed the palm of his hand across it’s lid.

It was a silly thing really, even Clary had giggled when he had first made it back in second grade. A memory box, or more specifically, a memory box of Jace and their moments together. It was a wooden box, one he had begged his mom to get while at Michael’s Art Store with Clary, and he had painted the box purple, because it had reminded him of Jace.

Yet, inside of it held Simon favorite memories of his life with Jace. He chuckled at the persistence his younger self had.

“Mama, can you buy the box pretty please?” He pouted, grabbing at the sleeve of his mother’s light blue sweater.

“Simon, sweetie, why do you want the box so badly?” She had asked exasperated. He quickly let go of his mother’s hand and spun around theatrically, landing feet a foot apart and hands on his hips before launching in his explanation.

“The box is gonna be me and Jace’s box. See, when we get bigger, we’re gonna get married. How do I know this you ask? Well, see when me and Jace exchanged Valentine’s day cards, it was basically marriage, but we can’t get actually married until later. So, basically we’re friends right now, but this box is gonna have all our memories in it, so that later when we’re grown ups, we will remember we’re meant to be married. And then, of course….” He stopped when he saw his mother smile and simply place the box in the cart before calling him to help her find Clary in the store.

Simon chuckled again, forever in awe of his mother’s endless patience with him as a child. He had been so adamant that Jace would end up with him forever. He’d plan their wedding, purple suits and a Stars Wars theme, instead of cutting the cake with knives, they would have lightsabers. He wiped some more tears that seemed to have escaped his eyes, before focusing on the box in front of him. He had kept this box as a secret for years, even after they had started dating, too embarrassed to show Jace just how into him he was even at the beginning.

It was an accident when he found out about the box, sometime during their junior year in college. Jace had stayed at his apartment and had woken up earlier, finding his way into the kitchen to grab the Cocoa Puffs before heading to the couch to watch some Saturday morning cartoons. Simon remembers waking up to find Jace on the couch, box in his lap, gently holding the Valentine he had given Simon all those years before.

“Oh god. You found the box. You found, THAT, box. Okay. Listen, I am so sorry if you’re like creeped out about this, I didn’t mean to leave it out. I know you probably think I’m a weirdo, which okay, maybe I am, but now you probably think I’m like a weird serial killer type creep, and I am so sorry if…”

“Simon.” He had said it in such a flat voice that Simon was stunned. He expected disgust, confusion, anger, hell even laughter at his expense. Instead, his boyfriend’s voice was contained, and he couldn’t decided which was worse. So he watched and waited for him to continue.

“You still have this, even after everything?” Jace’s voice was a whisper, floating calmly in the air between them, almost as if unsure of itself. His boyfriend had looked up to meet his eyes and Simon noticed how watery his seemed to be.

“Of course I did. You were my first Valentine, my first...everything.” He told him, honestly, because if this was it, well why not just let it all out.

Jace gave a slow nod, grabbing the box and setting it next to his side. He beckoned Simon to come closer. Simon knelt down in front of his boyfriend and felt Jace bring his hands up to cup his face, wiping away a few of his tears.

“You always believed in us?” He asked, voice wavering as tear slid down his cheek. Simon instinctively reached out to wipe it, resting his hand on his neck afterwards.

“Since the beginning. You were my first love Jace, forever my Obi-wan.” He chuckled and Jace smiled, before bringing their mouths close, whispering on his lips.

“Thank you.”

He smiled as more tears ran freely down his face. Later that week, when he had stayed at Jace’s apartment, his boyfriend had grabbed the framed photo of his family from his bedroom and opened the back up. Simon remembers his heart filling with joy when he saw the little Star Wars themed Valentine emerge from behind the photograph. It had been a relief knowing that Jace had always believed in them too.

Simon heard the crack of thunder and turned his head towards the bedroom window, watching as the rain poured outside. He hoped Jace was somewhere warm and safe, maybe at his brother and his boyfriend’s place. He eyed the box once more before deciding to continue his journey down memory lane.


 

“So what did you do?”

Maia stared at her friend, who looked like a morose, drowned rat.

“Simon and I got into a huge fight. I,I don’t even remember how it started, I just remember that I said somethings and he retaliated, and I hit below the belt and he told me to get out.” He rushed out as he made his way to the bar stool, collapsing into it. He ran both hands down his face and through his hair, before looking at the unimpressed bartender.

“I don’t know how to fix this. He was so upset.” He whispered, more to himself than to her. Her gaze softened and she set the glass she had been cleaning down to grab two shot glasses and a bottle of vodka.

“Isn’t today your day? You guys are the weirdos that got together on Valentine’s Day, right?” She asked pouring shots for the both of them. He nodded as she handed him one, before tapping his glass with hers and downing it.

“So then what’s the issue? Go apologize to him, it’s Simon, he’ll forgive you. He loves you.” She asked, resuming her previous task.

“I told him he talked too much.” He stated and Maia hastily caught the glass that slipped out of her hands at his admission. She set it back down and stared at him in shock.

“Oh.” Anyone who was close to Simon knew that was one of his biggest insecurities. He hated how much he spoke, always fearful that one day it’d drive away the people he loves, most importantly, Jace. She remembers spending of few nights awake in college comforting the boy whenever his anxiety about his voice was too overwhelming. Even Alec had learned not to comment on how much Simon spoke when he started noticing the effects it had on the boy.

So for Jace to have said anything negative about how much Simon rambled or spoke in the midst of argument, most have been a scene out of Simon’s worst nightmare.

She watched as he shifted in his seat.

“I don’t know how to fix this. I didn’t mean to say anything about his voice either. He was just...getting under my skin and I just wanted him to back off. I blamed him for not sleeping right, said he talked too much about star wars. All of a sudden I heard myself say ‘why do I put up with you’ as if he was a burden.” He ran a hand through his hair.

“A burden...as if loving Simon could ever be anything less than the best thing that has ever happened to me.” The way he spoke of Simon always seemed to shock Maia. She hadn’t known them from the beginning, but for the few years she’s come to know them, their relationship had always been somewhat mesmerizing.

Many thought that Simon was the one who was head over heels for Jace. While he was, most definitely, Jace was just as gone for him. It was in the small things that people had a tendency to gloss over. The way he would hold his hand when he was nervous. The fond look in his eyes when he spoke about anything. The way he’d ask Clary if Simon was around with a lost puppy look on his features. The way Jace spoke of Simon when he was around, his face shining brightly and his words drenched in admiration and love. It was clear that Simon was it for Jace.

She took a deep breathe, before finally downing her own shot.

“I’m not at the forefront of your relationship drama, you know I’m not about that life.” He chuckled at that, and she smiled glad to have brought out something other than despair from the boy. “But I do know this. You guys love each other. The whole, I’ll be with you forever and ever even if you snore like a T-Rex type love. So, go apologize. Be honest with him. Tell him you’re sorry and that he’s your world not your burden. Then make him some Sangria. I know you love him Jace, so go fight for him.”

Jace look at his friend for a while, digesting what she had said before nodding. He looked around the bar, before giving her a quizzical look.

“Aren’t you supposed to be with Gretel today?” She laughed.

“Yeah. She’s picking me up soon, we have the whole day planned together. Luke just wanted me to look over the bar this morning, cause Russell was going to be late. Something about a bar crawl with the Irish.” He laughed and soon she joined in.

“Alright, one more shot, then I’m kicking you out so you can face your problems.”

“That’s fair.” They clinked their glasses, downing them quickly. Jace got up, making his way towards the door.

“Hey Maia.”

“Yeah?”

“Thanks” She smiled brightly.

“No problem, lover boy.” He laughed again as he walked out of the Hunter’s Moon and into the storm. Hopefully, he thought while looking at the clouds, he wouldn’t get sick later.


 

When he arrived home he was soaked. He carefully opened the door to the apartment he shared with Simon and peeked inside to see if his boyfriend was around. Simon usual spots after any fight they had were usually the couch, the window that served as a small reading nook, or their bedroom. Anywhere there was pillows and soft blankets. The reading nook was empty and the couch as well, though Jace realized that the blanket he had been wrapped up earlier in the morning had disappeared. He felt a pang in his chest, the image of his boyfriend softly crying into the blanket appearing in his mind.

He sighed and took off his boots, leaving them on a mat they kept near the doorway. He shuffled over to the small laundry area they had tucked in the corner of their apartment, after the kitchen. He stripped out of his drenched clothes, grabbing a towel to dry off his body and his hair. He looked around for the basket where Simon usually kept their clean clothes in, spotting the white basket place on a stool next the the washer-dryer combo. He sifted through pulling out his soft grey sweatpants and a white tee. He looked over the basket, spotting a pair of Star Wars themed fuzzy socks, a gift his Simon had given him during their freshman year of high school.

“Here, for your popsicle toes.” Jace sputtered, little drops of his soda flying onto his desk. He looked at his best friend in confusion and indignation, before taking the terribly wrapped gift from his hands.

“What the hell is this, Si?” Simon had the audacity to laugh, as he made himself comfortable on Jace’s bed, getting his homework out from his Captain America themed backpack.

“Open it and see.” He said, instead of giving Jace a direct answer. In return he rolled his eyes, but complied to opening the package. He tore off the pieces of heart shaped wrapping paper, until all he had in his lap were three pairs of socks. One had the Captain America shield, the red, white and blue colors bright. The other had Han Solo and Chewbacca on it, posing just like they do in a poster Jace has seen in Simon’s room, and the final pair is a simple brown, covered in blue and yellow flowers, the words ‘Dang it all to heck’ written on them. They were all very fuzzy, extremely soft to the touch. Before Jace could even process his thoughts, he leaned over and pecked Simon on the cheek.

Both boys froze for a bit, Jace contemplating whether jumping out his bedroom window was enough to kill him. When Simon cleared his throat and looked at him, eyes amused and smile wide.

“So I guess you liked them?” He asked, smug. And Jace felt his face heat up. He looked down at the socks, trying to figure out what had possessed him to be so forward.

“Hey.” He heard Simon whisper, and he turned to look over at his friend who eyed him with concern. “It’s fine, I don’t mind the cheek kiss. Clary does it to me all the time.” He smiled then. “Besides I know I have very kissable cheeks, my Bubbie Helen told me so.”

Jace laughed, shoving his friend causing him to laugh as well. Still, he couldn’t help but think about how right Simon’s Bubbie was and how he wished he could keep kissing his cheeks.

He smiled softly down at the socks as the memory unfolded before his eyes. He wiggled his toes, realizing that indeed they were a bit cold, so he sat on the floor to put them on. He stayed seated on the floor of the laundry room, wondering just how lucky he’d been throughout the years to always have Simon.

He got up and made his way towards the bedroom, passing the kitchen with the mugs still in the sink and the box of Cocoa Puffs on the counter. He stood a few feet away from the bedroom door. The door was ajar and he could hear the Simon breathing, sniffling after a few breathes. He closed his eyes bracing himself, hoping he could still salvage what’s left of their day.

He stepped through the doorway, opting to lean against the wood framing when he saw that Simon had his back to him. His hair was still ruffled in that cute way that made Jace want to run his hands through it. He was still in his morning wear, a reddish brown long sleeve with some witty saying on it, holes and tears on the sleeve from wear his teeth worried at it. Jace’s blanket is wrapped around his waist, covering his lower back and his legs. Next to him laid the memory box Jace had stumbled upon some years ago.

The purple box contained every little thing Simon found that reminded him of their relationship together. Hell, the color was a representation of Jace’s once secret love for the color, a sign that Simon had always accepted even the small details of Jace. In his hand he held the Valentine Jace had given all those years ago, back when the worst thing in the world was not getting cookies on Fridays and missing crayons.

“Remember when we gave each other Valentine day cards.” Simon’s soft voice filtered through the air. Making it known he had been aware of his boyfriend’s presence.

Jace smiled softly at the memory. “That was our first Valentine’s day. I kept stealing your purple marker.” He laughed. “You’d get so mad, it was cute.”

“Ah yes, the proverbial hair pulling.” Jace heard the smile in his voice despite the quiet voice. He stared at the dried up daisy in the box and laughed, memories resurfacing in his mind.

“Remember when we swore to be enemies because we both thought we had crushes on Clary.” Simon choked out a watery laugh, one hand coming up to wipe away some runaway tears.

“Oh god, do I. I kept telling everyone you were my mortal nemesis. I remember I’d get so mad at you. Every time you got near Clary, it burned. It took me forever to realize it wasn’t because I wanted her attention, but because….I wanted yours again.” Jace nodded, coming to sit behind Simon on their bed, his chest pressed up against his back. He felt Simon tense a bit, before relaxing and leaning back against him.

“I remember when she rejected us both and then turned around to plant one on my sister.” Simon snorted as he remembered Clary turning to lip lock Izzy in the middle of the school hallway, before grabbing her hand a leading a dazed Izzy outside. He reached into the box to pull out the dried up daisy, holding it gingerly between both hands.

“I remember we both ended up walking home together. We didn’t even talk, we just walked in silence. And then we got to my house, just like we used to do before the whole Clary crush fiasco, and we just stood there, outside, shuffling our feet in silence.” Jace placed a hand on Simon’s shoulder, thumb moving back and forth in a soothing manner.  

“Do you remember what you said to me?”

Simon didn’t look at Jace as he asked, opting instead to caress the dead flower in his hand. He felt Jace lay his chin on the crook of his neck, his soft breath tickling the his ear.

“I said that I didn’t like Clary anymore. You gawked, like I was crazy.” He laughed and Simon chuckled in return. “You told me that I couldn’t hate a person just because they rejected me.”

“It’s true, if you do that’s just rude. No one likes fake nice guy.” Jace rolled his eyes, but gave a fond smile.

“I also remember ripping out that,” he pointed to the flower in Simon’s hands, “daisy from your mom’s garden and shoving it in your face. My apology flower.”

“Mmm, yes you did. Clearly, a romantic choice, though, I don’t think my mom’s forgiven you. It’s been what? Eleven? Twelve years?” Jace laughed, the sound reverberating through Simon’s back to his chest. Settling nicely in his heart like his favorite blanket.

“I know. She mentions it at every dinner, especially Yom Kippur.” He sighed. “I remember what I told you.” He took a deep breathe.

“I said: will you be my Obi-wan?” He heard Simon sniffle, so he wrapped his free hand around his waist.

“Yeah. You did.” He huffed out a laugh. “I don’t think I said anything. I was just so shocked, but as you can see,” He gestured to the dead plant in his hand. “I still held onto it.” They sat in silence for a beat before Simon placed the daisy back into the gently. Jace maneuvered his head to rest on the opposite side of his boyfriend’s neck, peering into the box before reaching out to grab something from inside.

“Remember prom?” He asked holding up the purple tie his boyfriend had worn to the event. Simon laughed, reaching out to touch the fabric.

“Yes! How could I forget? You insisted we have matching ties to show the entire student body that we belonged to each other.” Jace smirked.

“Yes I did and we looked great, by the way. Also I didn’t want Camille Belcourt or that Elliot dude thinking they had a chance with you.” His grip tightening a but at the mention of old threats, which, to Simon, wouldn’t have ever been possible. Not when he had Jace. Still, he laughed at how Jace was, forever and always, a protector.

“You laugh, but I remember Camille was eyeing you up like you were lunch.”

“She was creepy, like really creepy.” An ex of their friend Magnus, but still incredibly disturbing and pervasive. “It was still a good prom, even with the devil present.” He felt Jace snort against his shoulder.

”It was a great prom. I remember you wanted to slow dance, so badly. To your parents’ wedding song.”

“Yes, my eternal love for Elvis’ ‘I can’t help falling in love’.” Simon grinned at the memory. They had been freshly eighteen, dancing pressed up against each other, Jace’s arms around his waist as his arms encircled his neck. They swayed with foreheads pressed together and the smallest, but most genuine smiles on their lips. The world around them had disappeared at that moment and the only thing Simon remembers of that night was just how much he wanted to spend the rest of his life with this man. This perfectly imperfect man.

“You looked beautiful that night.” He felt Jace whisper into the nape of his neck, lips softly moving across the his skin, a warmth spreading throughout his body.

“You weren’t so bad yourself.” He whispered back, a hint of teasing laced in his voice. Jace smirked into his neck.

“I know, but that's a given.” He replied. This time Simon rolled his eyes. They stayed like that for a while, after Jace placed the tie back into the box. He wrapped his other arm around Simon’s waist, content to listen to the sound of his boyfriend’s breathing, slowly. He felt Simon rest his hands on his, but they were timid touches. Jace inhaled his boyfriend’s scent.

“I’m sorry.” Jace whispered into the comfortable silence. Simon, for his part, stayed silent. Opting instead to trace Jace’s fingers with his.

“I didn’t mean... to make you feel like less than. I’ve been stressed with work and I haven’t been sleeping, but I want you to know it wasn’t because of you.” He felt Simon start to tense up again, so he shifted around to sit in front of him, bringing his hands up to cup Simon’s face and get him to look at him.

“I love you. I love your voice. I love your theories about Stars Wars and how it should end, and I love how much you loved Carrie Fisher. You’re not someone I put up with, Simon. You’re someone I want to be with. I’m sorry that I was a dick. This wasn’t what I had planned for our Valentine’s Day.”

Jace waited for a reaction, hopefully a jab about how he could be a dick sometimes, which was true. Or even a playful hit on the shoulder with a warning that he had to make it up to him. Instead, Simon didn’t look at him, his eyes staring at Jace’s chest instead.

“I was just...worried, you know. I’m a worry wort, I’m my mom really, and it’s fine if..if you do find me annoying, cause like, I know sometimes I don’t stop. And you work so much, I don’t want you to not rest when you’re at home, cause it’s home right you’re supposed to rest. Plus, we’ve been dating since we were practically seven, I understand if you’re tired of...you know...me-”

“Hey, hey.” Jace interrupted, dipping his head down to meet Simon’s eyes. His favorite brown eyes, that were glistening with tears, one rolling down his cheek. Jace wiped it away with his thumb. “I will never get tired of you.”

“Are you sure? Jace, I understand if you do, I get it really I do. I’m too much sometimes, my mom even told me. And you’re so good, I can understand if you want to leave.” He choked out, his tears falling freely from his eyes. Jace starts shaking his head, before bringing Simon’s face closer to his.

“Simon. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t think myself so lucky to have you in my life. Everyday that I wake up with you next to me is a gift that I didn’t think I would ever get to experience. I know we don’t always have our good moments and that sometimes I say things that are just cruel, but never doubt that I love you. You’re not too much for me, you’re perfect. And if I’m so good, it’s only because you taught me how to be. God, Simon I love you so much that it scares me the thought of you not being here next to me. I wouldn’t trade you for anyone or anything, okay? I love you so much, alright? I’m right here for the long haul.”

Simon felt the thick vines of dread that had encased his heart start to loosen as Jace spoke, until there was only a phantom pain remaining. He nodded, as he tried to wipe away his tears, but Jace brought his lips down to meet his instead. If Jace’s words had assuaged his worries than his kiss finished them off. It was oh so gentle, yet held the most profound sentiment of love and devotion Simon had ever felt. Jace wanted him, he wanted Simon, dorky, nerdy, Simon and he couldn’t feel more relieved.

They broke apart, foreheads resting against each other, breathing a little heavier than before. Jace stared at the love of his life before shifting his eyes down and taking his lover’s hands into his own.

“Do you understand now? I could never love anyone but you, forever.” He whispered, breathless. Simon nodded.

“Yeah, I do. Me too.” Simon saw Jace smile, before he looked back up at him.

“You wanna hear a great story for the memory box?” Jace asked, biting his lip a little. Simon raised a skeptical eyebrow.

“Greater than the Clary fiasco? Oh, please, do tell.” He urged. Jace nodded, before reaching across the bed and fumbling through his bedside table drawer. Once he got whatever he needed, he slipped off the bed and stood with his back towards Simon.

“Jace? You okay?” He questioned.

“Remember when I proposed to you?” Jace asked, causing Simon to blink in confusion.

“What are you talking abou-- Oh.”

He watched as Jace got on one knee in front of him, a small gray box opened to show the thin silver band inside. He couldn’t help but think that the second grader in him would be quite happy at this turn of events.

“Look, this wasn’t really the way I had planned on proposing. I was actually planning on taking you to dinner and having a nice dessert and everything, but when we got into that fight today I couldn’t help but realize how badly I didn’t want to lose you. And I much I love you for you. The way you ramble when you’re passionate about something. The way you show how intelligent you are without ever being arrogant or overbearing. The way you smile and it feels like the sun burst in through our living room, Simon there are so many reasons why I love you.”

He watched as Simon placed a hand over his mouth, and then brought up the other one to hold it in place. He felt bad for making his boyfriend cry again, but as he felt his own tears fall down his face he and his throat close up he couldn’t help but think that this time it was worth it. Jace cleared his throat.

“But Simon, the most important reason isn’t any of that. I love you the most because you were the first person to ever love me as me. Before my good looks, or my cocky attitude. Before I got on the football team, or became the school heartthrob. Before I was the perfect Lightwood son or the best personal trainer in Brooklyn, you saw me. The real me. A small boy who liked laughing and coloring, and wasn’t yet afraid to say he like the colors pink and purple cause they made him feel safe. You saw the boy who liked hugging his brother and kissing his sister’s cheeks. You saw me and you loved me. And that…” He voice cut off, all of the things he’s wanted to say finally springing free from his mouth, caught up in the emotional weight being released. He cleared his throat a few more times, before taking a deep breathe.

“And that is the kind of love I never want to give up. You have been there for me for as long as I can remember, through every up and down in my life and you reminded me time and time again that I deserved to be loved. And Simon, I want to be that person for you. Because, babe, Simon, you deserve that kind of love too.”

He watched as Simon’s body hunched over in an attempt to keep his sobs in and he pressed on, knowing for certain that Simon loved him just as much as he loved Simon.

“I want to share more Valentine’s Days with you. I want to see you walk down an aisle and know that the smile you give is because of me. I want to wake up as the sun rises and you’re still asleep so that I can watch as it paints your face in all the wonderful colors it deserves. I want to wrap my arms around you when you attempt to make toast and not burn it. I want to dance with under every moonlight, every rainy afternoon, every time a love song comes on. I want to grow old with you, us together, sitting as we reminisce through every Valentine's’ Day since our first. Simon, I want you till the end of my days, and if I’m lucky, maybe even after that as well. And I’m sorry this isn’t the best proposal you would expect and you deserve a fancier one, but for now, if you’ll have me, will you, Simon Lewis, make me Jace Herondale the happiest man on earth? Will you marry me?”

Before Jace could really finish his question he had an arm full of one Simon Lewis. Thanks to his physical training background, he was able to grab onto Simon and keep the ring safe.

“Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes! Jace, yes, I will definitely marry you.” He shouted and sobbed, or at least that’s what it sounded like to Jace. He laughed, his voice watery and full of emotion, but he brought his other arm around his fiancé, holding him tightly.

Eyeing up the memory box that sat on their bed, he wondered whether they should invest in a slightly bigger one, now that they were going to spend the rest of their Valentine’s days together.